Friday, March 30, 2012

Guilty by Association

Connecting with an industry trade association is a great way to network and stay current as a professional. Their impact on the industry can be more than you realize. The live entertainment industry is what I want to get into, as my goal is to be a Creative Director working with events and productions. After doing some research I discovered one association that caters to this field, the International Special Events Society (ISES). This professional association’s vision “Dedicated and Educated to Deliver Creative Excellence and Professionalism in Special Events” is a great summarization of what it offers.

This certified organization brings people together and gives them the opportunity to network and collaborate. Small businesses are able to help each other and develop a relationship whether they are a novice in the industry or a veteran. The chapters are spread throughout a couple continents and my very own city of Orlando has a chapter. This is understandable, seeing as how this city is a tourist hotspot filled with special events. The organization also works with schools and their programs that are industry related. ISES is the only association that represents creative people in events. They allow the sharing of failures as a learning opportunity. Because this is a young industry, ISES gives its members the ability to position themselves as credible in their field. All this information can be retrieved from the short film video on the association’s website.

It would be wise of me to join this association or another one that relates to build up my network of those who are doing what I find enjoyable. The members of the International Special Events Society all encompass different aspects of special events, from technical to marketing to photography and catering. ISES has a great career center that connects its members to new employment opportunities. This organization is important to my industry because it has put together everyone and everything that one would need to put on a production. Thanks to organizations like this, the live entertainment industry can continue to learn, grow, and thrive.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Pick Your Direction

So earlier his week, my aunts went to San Antonio, Texas to visit my cousin. They did the common tourist type stuff but what I’m pretty sure I would have done had I gone, is engage in one of the biggest displays of music, film, and interactive activities just under an hour and a half away in Austin, Texas. From March 9-18, South by Southwest (SXSW) was holding their annual conference and festival.  SXSW is a company that plans and puts on trade shows and other events. The website has all the details and schedules of the event. The website even has a guide for first-timers.

Some parts of the event are free and some need registration that includes costly fees. This is an event you would definitely have to save up for. This huge project used an airline style type of pricing. The closer it got to the event, the more the price increased. This helps with the budget of putting on such a big event. It also is an incentive to get customers earlier so that an estimate of how many will be participating can be calculated. The first SXSW was held in March of 1987 with 700 attending, and last year’s had nearly 20,000! The many sponsors also aid in the costs while also promoting their own brand.

There are three different portions to this festival, they includes Film: showcasing new directorial talent, Interactive: all about new technology, and the Music: new and featured artists. The uses of social networks help in promoting the festival as well as updating and introducing new things with Facebook, Twitter, and the official YouTube channel.

Hopefully I can save up to visit my cousin next year and attend this event that happens every spring. The fact that it’s a huge regional event that attracts people from all around the nation is an example of great past execution.